Shumaker Empowers Future Leaders: Hosting Underserved High School Students for Ohio Supreme Court Law & Leadership Institute

TOLEDO, OH — Shumaker celebrates a decade-long commitment to hosting high school students participating in the Ohio Supreme Court-sponsored Law & Leadership Institute (LLI). LLI is a nonprofit in Ohio that works with high school students from underserved communities to educate them about and prepare them for careers in the legal profession. In 2021, LLI received the American Bar Association’s Alexander Award of Excellence in Pipeline Diversity.

The firm’s Toledo office recently hosted two underserved high school 10th grade students participating in LLI. Shumaker lawyer Tom Pletz and Attorney Development Officer Kristen Connelly organized numerous opportunities for the interns to learn more about the legal system, which included meeting Judge Tim Kuhlman at the Toledo Municipal Court, Judges Gary Cook and Eric Marks at the Lucas County Court of Common Pleas, Judges Christine Mayle and Thomas Osowik at the Sixth District Court of Appeals, and Judge Jeffrey Helmick at the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. In addition, the interns met with Shumaker lawyers Kate Decker, Emily Morrison, Dan Roy, Tre Hogue, Kathryn Young, and all of the firm’s Toledo Summer Associates. The interns also learned about community court-related programs such as the Re-Entry Coalition and the Toledo Tomorrow program for scholarship opportunities.

“We know the program works because VyJet’ Derden, a third-year law student at The University of Toledo College of Law, attended LLI for four years during her time as a Toledo Early College student before graduating in 2018, and this year, she came full circle as she oversaw the freshmen class of this summer’s LLI program,” Tom said.

Shumaker’s longstanding commitment to LLI reflects the firm's unwavering commitment to empowering aspiring legal professionals from diverse backgrounds and supporting their journey towards becoming future leaders.